The idea for this songfic came to me while I was listening to the song of the same name. The lyrics are so optimistically hopeful and I began to ponder how they could be applied to some of the real events that were going on in Germany during World War II as well as how they could be working into the fictional crew of Stalag 13.

The standard disclaimer applies – I make no claims to the characters and situations of the Hogan's Heroes universe. Lyrics to the song Here Comes the Sun written by George Harrison and are used here without permission to provide the background to the story.

Enjoy!

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Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Dawn was breaking on the eastern horizon as Carter crouched behind a bush a few feet from the tree stump entrance to the vast tunnel system beneath Stalag 13. He quickly scanned the woods and perimeter area of the nearby fence of the camp compound. Seeing nobody, he looked at the small girl crouching by his side.

"It's okay, Geli," he said softly. "We're here and in a moment, you will be safe."

"But Andrew, there are soldiers in there," she replied meekly. "They will see me."

He smiled and put his hand on her shoulder. "Nobody will harm you in there," he said kindly. "In fact, they won't even know you are there."

Geli looked up at Carter. "How are we going to get in without them seeing us?" she asked.

Carter's grin widened. "I'll show you," he said. "Now follow me." Carter crawled the few feet to the tree stump and after another quick check, lifted the top.

Geli gasped. "How did you do that?" she asked in amazement.

"I'll tell you later," he replied. "We have to climb in quickly before we're seen. You go first."

He scanned the area as Geli climbed over the rim of the stump and descended into the tunnel below. When her head disappeared, Carter scrambled into the stump and closed it behind him.

"Where are we?" Geli asked, staring around at the dimly lit tunnel.

"We're in a tunnel under the camp," he replied. "And you're going to be all right now. Colonel Hogan will help you."

"Colonel?" she repeated. "Is he a soldier?"

"Yes, but he's one of the good ones," Carter replied. "He looks after all of us as if we were his own children." Seeing that the skeptical look was still on Geli's face, he added, "That's why we call him Papa Bear."

Geli smiled up at him. "If you say he will help me, Andrew, then I won't be scared," she said.

"Come on," he said. "Let me show you where you can stay while I go upstairs."

"You're going to leave me?" she asked in a small voice.

"Only for a little while," he replied. "I have to go up so that they know I'm still here. But I'll be back down for you as soon as I can." He saw the troubled look in her eyes. "Don't worry, everything will be fine."

She nodded her head silently and followed him through the tunnel.

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

The men of Barracks 2 stood in formation in the compound waiting for morning roll call to be completed.

"Colonel, what are we going to say when Schultz notices that Carter isn't here?" Newkirk whispered.

"I'll think of something," Hogan replied. "For the moment, stall his as much as you can."

"Elf, zwölf," Schultz counted as he neared the end of the double row of men where Colonel Hogan stood. "Dreizehn, vierzehn!" Schultz turned and began to walk away from the prisoners. He stopped with a puzzled look and began counting on his fingers. After a moment, his eyes grew wide and he turned and scurried over to the Colonel.

"Colonel Hogan, there is one man missing," he said frantically.

"Are you sure?" Hogan asked. "Maybe you should count them again."

"Ja, good idea," he said and started towards the opposite end of the row before stopping. "I don't have to count them again, I know there is one man missing." He wagged his finger towards the Colonel. "There are supposed to be fifteen men in this barracks and I only counted fourteen. Fifteen minus one is fourteen."

"Are you sure now, Schultz?" Kinch asked.

"Of course I'm sure!" Schultz replied testily.

"That's not the way I heard it, Schultzie" Newkirk said. "The way I learned it, if you have a fifteen, which is a one and a five, and you take a one away, you have five left."

"He's right, Schultz," LeBeau chimed in. "If you take the one away, you just have five left. So fifteen minus one is five."

"Didn't the Luftwaffe teach you guys to count before they drafted you?" Hogan said. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw the barracks door open and Carter stick his head out.

"I know how to count, Colonel Hogan," Schultz whined. "And fifteen minus one is fourteen – I counted fourteen men here so that means one man is missing!"

"But Newkirk said it was five," LeBeau said. "And who are you going to believe, your allies or your enemies?"

"You have a point, Cockroach," Schultz said thoughtfully. "Now wait a minute, you don't have a point. You are my enemies, so I don't believe you!"

Hogan walked up to Schultz and put his arm around the portly guard to lead him down the line. He saw Carter sneaking along the barracks wall towards his place in line. "Schultz, I am your friend," he said. "And I don't want to see you get into trouble. So why not just count again."

Schultz sighed in resignation. "I will count again," he said. "And I will come up with fourteen men."

Hogan hurried back to his place in line as Schultz began his count at the other end. "It's about time you showed up," he said crossly.

"Sorry, Colonel," Carter said. "I kind of got sidetracked."

"Elf, zwölf," Schultz was coming back down the line. "Dreizehn, vierzehn, fünfzehn!" He turned to Hogan. "See, Colonel Hogan," he said. "I am supposed to count fifteen men and I only counted fifteen men!" He stopped and looked at Hogan with a confused expression. "How did I get fifteen?" he muttered. "I only counted fourteen before."

"I told you everyone was here," Hogan said glibly. "And you just won't believe me."

At that moment, the Kommandant emerged from his office and swaggered down the steps. "Repooooooooooort!" he shouted.

"But I know I counted fourteen," Schultz muttered to himself again.

"I said REPOOOOOOOOOOOOOORT!" Klink screamed.

"Schultz, you'd better report before you get into trouble," Hogan whispered, causing Schultz to waddle quickly into place.

"All present and accounted for!" Schultz said, saluting the Kommandant.

"As expected," Klink beamed. "Dis-missed!" he shouted with a salute.

The prisoners scattered, mostly going back to the barracks to climb into their bunks again. Schultz headed towards the kantine, still muttering to himself and counting on his fingers.

When they were all back into the barracks, Hogan said, "All right, Carter. Why were you so late? Did you have any trouble meeting Günter?"

"No sir," Carter replied. "I met him as planned."

"Then why were you late?" Hogan asked again.

Carter looked at Hogan sheepishly. "It was after Günter left …," he started. "I guess I'd better let her tell you."

"Her?" Hogan asked.

"Hey, Carter's brought a girl home," Newkirk teased. "Didn't have enough fun while you were on your mission and had to bring her home for a nightcap, eh?"

"Cut it out, Newkirk," Carter retorted. "It's not like that." He walked over to the bunk and tapped the secret activation switch. After the bunk had risen, he leaned over the hole and shouted down. "Geli?" He waited until he saw her appear at the bottom of the steps. "It's all right, you can come up." Seeing her shake her head nervously, he prompted again. "It's all right. I promise."

He watched as she emerged from the tunnel. The men of the barracks had been hooting until they saw Geli emerge and then fell silent in shock. Carter tapped the bunk again to close the tunnel entrance.

"Colonel Hogan," he said. "This is Geli."

"Carter, she's a mite young for you, isn't she?" Newkirk asked and was elbowed hard in the side by LeBeau.

"Geli, this is Colonel Hogan," Carter said, ignoring the interruption.

"Hello," Geli said timidly. "Andrew said that you could help me."

"I'll do my best," Hogan replied kindly. "But I don't know what your problem is. Can you tell me?" He patted one of the benches by the table as an invitation for her to sit. She looked up at Carter and he nodded. When she sat at the table, Hogan sat across from her.

"Andrew says he calls you Papa Bear," she said. "But you don't look like a bear."

"You should see him when he gets angry," Newkirk muttered.

"Newkirk!" Hogan admonished. "Geli, my friends do call me Papa Bear, but it's a secret. I don't want many people to know that. You can call me Papa Bear when we are alone like this, but can you keep it a secret?" Geli nodded. "Now, tell me your problem."

Geli silently looked at Hogan across the table and then looked up at Carter. "Go ahead," he urged her.

The room was totally silent the entire time Geli told her tale.

My name is Geli – really Angelika – Kohn. A year ago, I was in my home in Düsseldorf with my Mama and Papa – we lived on the third floor of a building that had many other homes. Suddenly, we heard a lot of noise from the street, and saw a truck filled with soldiers in their black uniforms jumping out and yelling. Mama and Papa got very upset, and Papa told me that I had to quickly run away out the back door of the building, and go hide. He said I should go as far away from our home as I could and never come back to it. I tried to tell him that I didn't want to leave him, but he yelled at me and told me to do as I was asked. So I ran away and never saw Mama and Papa since.

I kept running and hiding as much as I could, never wanting to be seen by anybody. I would find food scraps to eat when I was near a village, but mostly I ate berries and fruit that I found growing near my hiding places. When the weather turned cold, I found a nice barn filled with hay and cows and stayed there. When the farmer came to the barn to milk the cows or clean up, I hid as far back in the hayloft as I could and stayed quiet. The barn was warmer because of the hay and cows, and I was able to take some of the vegetables that the farmer fed to the cows. I also would take a little milk from the cows before the farmer came in the morning. Sometimes at night I would sneak out of the barn to a nearby stream that didn't freeze over and get some water to drink.

Last night, Andrew came into the barn when I was out of the hayloft. I hid in the stall with the cows and waited, not sure why a strange man was there. After a while, another strange man came in and talked to Andrew. When the other man left, Andrew didn't leave right away – I wished he would leave quickly so I could go back and hide. Before he left, I couldn't help it – and sneezed, and Andrew found me. I was scared at first, but Andrew was so nice and talked to me in a kind voice. I told him the same story I'm telling you, and he said that you could help me so that I didn't have to stay in a barn like and animal.

When she finished, Hogan reached out and put his large hand over both her small hands that were clasped together in front of her. "How old are you, Geli?" he asked softly.

"Eleven," she replied.

"Blimey, eleven years old and living all alone hiding in people's barns," Newkirk exclaimed.

"And she's so thin," LeBeau commented. "She hasn't had a decent meal in ages."

Hogan motioned for his men to be quiet. "Do you know why those soldiers in black uniforms came into your building?" he asked her.

She shook her head. "Papa said it was because we are Juden," she replied. "But I didn't understand why it mattered and couldn't ask him to explain." Tears began to well up in her eyes at the recollection.

Hogan patted her hand reassuringly. "Don't worry, Geli," he said soothingly. "I'll help you. Maybe we can find your Mama and Papa."

"But Colonel," Kinch began and stopped when Hogan shot him a severe look.

At that moment, the outside door to the barracks door opened and Schultz entered. "Colonel Hogan," he said loudly.

"Schultz, didn't your mother ever teach you to knock before you enter a room?" Hogan asked. "I'm busy here."

"Colonel Hogan, I don't care," Schultz said in a matter of fact manner. "I want to talk to you about roll call this morning."

"Yeah, yeah, I know. Fifteen minus one is fourteen," Hogan said dismissively. "Now beat it." He looked over at Geli, who was staring at Schultz with a look of terror in her eyes. Carter had put his arm around her and was patting her shoulder reassuringly.

"No, no, no!" Schultz said. "I know you were up to some monkey business this morning. I know I counted fourteen men the first time." He looked at Geli. "You, little girl. Doesn't it sound very suspicious to count fourteen men at first and then … count … fifteen … the … next … time?" He stopped talking as he realized that Geli was a little girl and not one of the prisoners.

"Colonel Hogan," he said helplessly. "That is a li-li-little girl!" There was panic in his voice. "What is a little girl doing in the barracks? I have to report this!"

"I wouldn't do that, Schultz," Hogan said casually as he rose and stood near the guard. "You'll have to explain how she managed to get in."

"But I don't KNOW how she got in!" Schultz exclaimed.

"My point exactly," Hogan said. "If you report it, then you'll have to try to explain it to Klink. And then the Gestapo will want to talk to you."

"Gesta-po?" Schultz stuttered.

"That's right," Hogan continued. "Hochstetter will want answers. And when you can't give him any, it'll be goodbye Stalag 13 and hello Stalingrad!"

"I … I … I …," Schultz stammered. "I see nothing! I know nothing!" Hurriedly, the guard turned and ran from the building.

"He was a funny man," Geli commented.

"We think so too," Kinch replied.

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

"Kinch, get on the horn to our contacts in Düsseldorf and see if they happen to know anything about what Geli told us," Hogan ordered. "Something like this had to be noticed."

"Right, Colonel," Kinch replied. "Geli, can you tell me your Mama and Papa's names?"

Geli nodded. "Jakob and Rebekah," she answered.

Kinch smiled at her and headed for the tunnel.

"Geli, we'll keep you safe here," Hogan said. "But I'm afraid that you'll have to stay down in the tunnel as much as possible so that we can be sure you aren't seen by someone who isn't as funny as Sergeant Schultz. Would that bother you?"

"I'll stay down with you as much as I can," Carter offered quickly.

"We all will," Newkirk added.

"I'll be all right down there," she replied.

"And now I'll cook you the best breakfast you've ever tasted," LeBeau said.

"LeBeau, start off easy," Hogan warned. "She hasn't had much to eat for such a long time. You don't want to make her ill."

"Sorry, Colonel," LeBeau replied. "I didn't think about that. I'll make sure that she gets some nutritious food for a change."

"Come on, Geli," Carter said. "Let's go down to the tunnel and get you a place set up." He grabbed the blanket from his bunk and started towards the tunnel entrance.

"Hey, Carter," Newkirk called out. "Catch." He threw the blanket from his bunk towards Carter. "Make sure she's comfortable."

Carter grinned. "Thanks pal!" he replied.

- - - - -

Hogan was in his office later that afternoon when there was a knock on his door. "Come on in," he said.

"Colonel?" Kinch said as he opened the door.

"Did you find out anything?" Hogan asked.

"Nothing much," Kinch replied. "They did remember the raids on Jewish families that remained in the city, but they didn't seem to want to talk about specific names." Kinch noticed the faraway look in Hogan's eyes. "Maybe they were able to get away," he suggested.

"It's possible," Hogan said absently. "But from what I've heard, I wouldn't think it likely."

Even though Hogan didn't elaborate, Kinch knew what he was talking about. He had heard about some terrible things that the Germans were doing in the cities. "I'll keep asking around," he said. "I think she deserves all the help I can give her."

Hogan blinked and refocused his eyes on Kinch. "Thanks, Kinch," he said. "Let me know if you find anything."

- - - - -

For the next few days, the men were true to their word. Geli was alone in the tunnel only during roll call. The rest of the time, at least one of the men was with her, talking and telling stories. Newkirk even entertained her with magic tricks. But the one who spent the most time in the tunnel was Carter, who had even slept down in the tunnel with his new friend.

One the third night, Kinch emerged from the tunnel and quietly crossed the barracks to knock on the Colonel's door.

"Yeah?" came the sleepy reply from inside. "What is it?"

Trying not to wake the other men, Kinch entered the room and closed the door behind him. "Colonel, I've got something," Kinch said.

Hogan immediately woke up. "What did you find?" he asked, turning on the small bedside lamp.

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes …

"In Munich," Kinch said. "When they left Düsseldorf, they apparently went to Munich and have been active in the Underground ever since."

Munich?" Hogan asked. "Did you contact them yet?"

"No sir," Kinch replied. "I didn't know how you wanted to proceed."

Hogan smiled. "I want to give a small girl her parents back, that's how I want to proceed!" he said.

Kinch smiled back. "That's what I thought you'd say," he replied. "I made arrangements to get back in touch with Munich in two hours."

Hogan hopped down from his top bunk. "Good work!" he said.

"Are you planning to tell Geli now?" Kinch asked.

Hogan shook his head. "No," he replied. "We're going to tell Carter now. I think he's the person who deserves to break the news to Geli."

Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been clear
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

The whole gang was in the tunnel waiting while Carter went out to meet Geli's parents and bring them in.

"Will Andrew be back soon?" Geli asked Kinch as they sat in the tunnel.

Kinch glanced at his watch. "He should be back any time now," he replied.

"You must be excited," LeBeau said. Geli nodded happily.

At that moment, they heard noises at the far end of the emergency tunnel and soon they saw Carter leading a man and a woman into the tunnel's common area when the men had assembled.

Geli squealed. "Mama! Papa!"

The men watched as she ran to her parents and was enveloped in two pairs of arms. Hogan looked at his men and noticed damp eyes in each of them. Carter still stood near Geli and her parents and was smiling as if the war had just ended.

After a few moments, Jakob Kohn walked over to where the prisoners were gathered. He looked at each one of them and, after identifying Colonel Hogan, stuck out his hand and said, "Colonel Hogan, I give you many thanks for giving us back our little Angelika."

Hogan shook his hand. "The man who deserves all of the credit for this is Sergeant Carter over there," he said, motioning towards Carter. "He was the one who found her living in the barn. He brought her back here. Oh, and it was Sergeant Kinchloe here who managed to track you down."

Jakob looked at all the men. "I thank you all for what you have done," he said.

"Sir, can I ask you a question?" Carter asked, stepping forward. When Jakob nodded, he continued, "What happened in Düsseldorf when you had to send Geli away?"

Jakob looked at Rebekah before speaking. "I suppose I should explain," he said.

Hogan shook his head. "You owe us no explanation," he said. "We are curious though. Geli mentioned that you were paid a visit by, as she put it, soldiers in black uniforms."

Jakob nodded. "She's correct. The Schutzstaffel came to our building," he said. "You see we are Juden." He paused, waiting for a reaction. Seeing none from the men, he continued, "The Germans have not been quiet about their dislike for our people. They have been rounding up as many Juden as they can and sending them away."

"Where?" LeBeau asked.

"East," Jakob said simply. "They are being sent to camps in the east."

"Work camps?" Kinch asked.

"Worse," Rebekah replied before Jakob could speak. "People are sent away and never heard from again."

"Sacre Bleu!" LeBeau exclaimed.

"You said it, mate," Newkirk added.

"Why did you send Geli away?" Carter asked.

Jakob sighed. "We knew why they had come, and at that moment, it was the one thing that I could think of to give her the best chance of surviving," he said.

"How did you get away?" Hogan asked.

"We had a hiding place in our flat, but we were not positive that they wouldn't find it if they searched," Rebekah said. "As it turns out, they didn't search too thoroughly and didn't find us."

"When we were sure they had gone, we searched for Geli in the hopes that she would have found someplace nearby," Jakob added. "But we knew that if we could easily find her, then the Schutzstaffel could also easily find her."

"Were you a member of the Underground in Düsseldorf?" Hogan asked.

Jakob nodded. "Ja, and we had their help in our search," he said. "But after a few days, we sadly had to give up the search and move on. The Underground helped us travel to Munich, where we have been ever since."

"When Kinch talked to Düsseldorf, they said they didn't know anything about you," Hogan said.

Jakob nodded. "Safety," he said. "But they did contact us in Munich to tell us of your inquiry. We had no idea why you were looking for us."

Hogan smiled. "And now you know!" he said happily.

"We never thought we would see our darling Geli again," Rebekah said, tears welling up in her eyes.

Geli walked over and hugged her mother. "It's all right Mama," she said. "I didn't think I would ever see you and Papa again. But we are all together now."

Rebekah hugged her daughter tight. "My dear Angelika," she sobbed.

Hogan cleared his throat. "I think we should leave you three to be together," he said. "LeBeau will bring you down some food in the morning."

It's all right

"Sergeant Carter will take you to rendezvous with the Underground in the area," Hogan told Jakob. He stuck his hand out. "Good luck to you," he said.

Jakob shook Hogan's hand. "Danke, Colonel," he replied.

Carter knelt down beside Geli. "Goodbye Geli," he said. "It's been a pleasure to have you here.I'll miss you when you're gone. But I'm real happy that you are back with your Mama and Papa."

"Andrew, will I ever see you again?" she asked

Carter looked back at her with a pained expression. "You're going to Munich and I'm stuck here," he replied. "If I ever get a chance, I will come and visit you. But …" His voice trailed off, leaving the sentence unfinished.

Geli leaned forward and hugged Carter. "Andrew, thank you for helping me," she said.

Carter hugged her back without a word. "Your welcome, little angel," he whispered.

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Author's Notes

In writing this story, I did not want to make light of the real plight of the Jewish people that were forcibly deported to the concentration camps by the Nazis. It was a tragic time, not only for the European Jews, but also for other ethnic groups such as the Gypsies and Slavic peoples. We, as humans, should never forget what happened and should ensure that such a thing never happens again.

I wanted to focus solely on what this situation could mean on a more personal level – how it could affect one single family, and even one single young girl. In the midst of all of this hatred, could the kindness and caring of one man make a difference in that one family's future? As you can see from the story, I do think that the actions of even one person could make a difference, albeit a very small and localized difference, in the world. And if more people act as the one person does, those small differences can add up to a something larger.

As this story is being written, the calendar nears the time of Passover and both Western Christian and Eastern Orthodox Easter. These are holidays of hope and freedom, and I feel that this is an appropriate time for a story with a hopeful feel to it.

Thank you for reading.